Saturday, November 7, 2009

Sweaters for China

If you haven't read "Silent Tears: Journey of Hope in a Chinese Orphanage" by Kay Bratt I highly recommend that you pick up a copy ASAP. I read the book last Februaury ... and I am amazed at the doors God has opened and the ties that have been woven since that time. That book was something that has changed my life and it will undoubtedly move your heart too if you haven't read it already. (Grab the kleenex it is heart-wrenching at times.)

Recently Kay asked on her blog for donations of sweaters that she will be sending to the orphanage that she wrote about in her book as well as to another orphanage. This is from her blog:
Most of us do not have to worry about our children staying warm this winter. However, now that the temps are beginning to drop, my mind is constantly straying back to those many winter days I spent walking through the rows of babies in the orphanage– babies who were dressed in three layers of clothes and then strapped down in their cribs with no ability to move, roll over or work the numb muscles. Sound sad? Yes– it does but it is true. One need I remember having each year was for warm sweaters for the infants, toddlers and other children.

If you would like to pick up a sweater or two and mail it to me, I will be sending off a box of sweaters to two orphanages. I cannot say which, as one was the orphanage I wrote about in Silent Tears; A Journey of Hope in a Chinese Orphanage. You may not know exactly where it is located but I can promise you that the children will benefit from your gift of warmth.

Please only send sweaters with buttons or zippers, as these are the most convenient for the orphanage ayis to use. Size 6 month and larger needed. You can email me at for the address to mail your donation to.

Can you imagine these children? My heart aches with the thought.
The boys and I went shopping today and we had such a wonderful time!... at least that is how I will remember it ... it was probably a little too long for them, but it was SO worth it. I prayed that God would guide me to the right sweaters and I am sure he did. The boys probably don't realize in full what a wonderful thing they did by offering to pick out one sweater each along with the ones I had chosen. But what a wonderful teaching moment and such a genuine act on their part. Easton chose this warm-up jacket after I mentioned that some boys wear pink as that's what many of the orphanages have a lot of.

And Brayden chose the red striped sweater in the middle here (wonderful colors!)

But out of all of them ... THIS is my favorite.

I get tears in my eyes when I hold it in fact. It is dark navy blue (not the bright blue that shows on my computer) with bright sunflowers across the front. The buttons are even sunflowers! AND if that is not enough the middles of the sunflowers look like chocolate chip cookies!

When I saw this sweater I knew it is one I would have LOVED to have had as a little girl. And I am praying that the little one who receives this will be warmed on the inside AND the outside knowing that it is packaged with much love. And I pray even deeper that someday soon the little one who wears it will have a photo taken (maybe even wearing this sweater?) that is cherished and looked at a million times a day by her forever family who is on their way to give her a home, food, a warm bed and a loving hug. If you would like to send a sweater (or two) please email Kay at her address above or via her blog link also above.

Matthew 25:35-40 (New International Version)

35For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.'

37"Then the righteous will answer him, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?'

40"The King will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.'

Please remember the least of these--Orphan Sunday is November 8th--but everyday is "Son"-day.


TanyaLea said...

Okay, this post touched me to the CORE! You picked out such beautiful sweaters and I love the sunflower one, too! well as the sunny yellow one with the flowers growing up from the waistline. So pretty!! And how thoughtful to thing of the boys, too! I love that you prayed over them...they will be wrapped in not only a sweater, but a blessing from Above, too! I want to contribute some sweaters, too. Breanna and I will do some shopping after church in the morning. Thanks for the post! <><

Blessings and Joy!!

Tara Anderson said...

What beautiful sweaters!!! I'm pretty partial to the sunflower one myself. :) How sweet it must have been going shopping for these with your boys. I know how much my kids LOVE picking up things for Cora, and it's so sweet to see their little hearts touched by the needs of "the least of these". We'll have to be on the lookout for a good buy (or a few good buys!) to send off ourselves!

Girly Girl Mommy said...

Juct back in town and catching up on my blog reading. I came here before Kay's blog so hadn't seen this yet (I too ordered her book last winter and was deeply moved and forever changed). I'm adding sweaters to my list! The girlies and I are going shopping this week for our Samaritan's Purse Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes, our Opperation Giggle gift for Ethiopia and why not add sweaters for China!! It's just heartwarming to see our children "get" the importance of seeing the needs of others and responding to be the hands and feet of Jesus. You and your boys picked out some beautiful sweaters!


The Sanders Family said...

I LOVE these sweaters Valerie. Nice job shopping :) You have such a BIG heart and are such a blessing to others!

Love ya!

Shirlee McCoy said...

Your post touched me deeply as I would love to have known that my daughter had a beautiful warm sweater to cuddle up in while I waited to travel to bring her home. There are many, many days when I wonder about the people who touched her life during the seven years she was in China. I have photos of Americans who volunteered at the orphanage, and I think of them holding and praying for my little girl, and it means the world to me.

The family

The family